Creggs celebrated the official opening of their new facilities with a 38 to 21 points Connacht Junior 1A League win over Buccaneers writes Padraic Deane
Creggs served up some brilliant attacking rugby, but Buccaneers made it clear they meant business right from the kick-off.
For the opening 10 minutes Creggs were under the cosh before Shane Purcell opened the scoring with a penalty goal.
Creggs pulled further away 10 minutes later, when Elliot Jennings broke a tackle and sent fellow centre Shane Dowd on a searing run to touch down at the right corner flag.
A magnificent score was capped by a magnificent touch line conversion.
The game then reverted to Creggs soaking up further Buccaneers pressure before Dowd struck again, this time slicing through the cover from close range to score between the posts, Purcell adding the extras again.
Creggs moved 20 points clear on 36 minutes, when a beautifully measured kick from Purcell was gathered by his chasing full back Ronan Dowd who scored between the posts, Purcell converting.
On the stroke of half-time Creggs secured their bonus point, Jennings again making the crucial break with Purcell prodding through a grubber kick, Kevin Gavin collected at the corner flag.
Purcell adding the conversion from the left touch line to match his earlier one from the right to make it 31-7.
To their credit Buccaneers battled on and in many respects Creggs failed to repeat the intensity in their second-half performance.
Byrne added a second try, again converted by Hanley and when Shane Dowd left the field on a questionable yellow after 21 minutes, Buccaneers capitalised with a third try from hooker Ronan Grenham, again converted by Hanley.
At this stage, they looked set to secure at least one losing bonus point but Creggs prop Tom Fleming showed some deft footwork to cross between the posts on 37 minutes, Purcell adding the conversion to make it six from six and Buccaneers left with nothing.
The win leaves Creggs in second place, 5 points behind Connemara who notched up another bonus point win over Sligo at the weekend.
As this is the back to back match however, they get another shot at Creggs with the teams meeting again on Saturday week in Dubarry Park, kick-off 7 pm.
Creggs Rugby: Tom Fleming, Maurice Buckley, Aidan Leech, Ian Whittington, Brian Donoghue, Peter Lohan, James Brandon, Brian Diffley, Eoghan Coyle, Shane Purcell, Kevin Gavin, Eoghan Jennings, Shane Dowd, Martin Quinn, Ronam Dowd, Danny Arnold, Seon Og Higgins, Kevin Brandon, Mark Brandon, Ronan Cahill.
Buccaneers: O Kiernan, R Grenham, M Murphy, S Kruopa, R Byrne, S O’Connell, T Gilheany, L Donnelly, G Fallon, M Hanley, C Ford, R Moony, R Teape, C Digan, H Hughes, D Buckley, S Flynn, A Lynch, O Treacy, B McDonnell.
Referee: Shane McElwee (CBIRFU)